Yesterday I was feeling like I've been working at making changes, and that I'm not getting the results I want. I want fast, noticeable weight loss. I felt almost hopeless, that I'll never get back to a reasonable (for me) weight. I was almost enticed to give up.
But my **rational brain** knows I am in this to make permanent, lifestyle changes. I have lost over 10 lbs, and that is really something I should be celebrating! The changes I'm making are not bothersome, I don't feel deprived. I could be eating much less and exercising a lot more if I really wanted faster weight loss, but I'm really "ramping up" my nutritional knowledge. So I was able to fend off that hopelessness!
I did go back to the things that I KNOW are helping me on this lifestyle - logging my food and my commitment to read an article a day on health/nutrition/exercise. BOY am I glad I did!!!
The article I read was called "Is This Surprising Source of Self-Sabotage Holding You Back?" (link is below).
Here's the thing that really hit me:
"Limiting beliefs are also emotional, not logical. They originate from the limbic system, which is the area in our brain responsible for emotions. Fearful memories are formed here, as well, which could activate our flight-or-fight response if you sense a threat. Thus, if you believe you are clumsy and non-athletic, the thought of going to the gym where you'll feel uncomfortable or embarrassed feels threatening. As such, your brain will try to convince you to avoid it at all costs.
Even when you try to use logic to talk yourself out of those self-sabotaging thoughts, your emotions usually win out. Why? Because the limbic system processes thoughts lightning fast, faster than your **rational brain**. The barrage of negative thoughts is coming at you more quickly than your logical mind can dispute them and calm you down."
I have self-sabotaging thoughts about exercise. My brain seems to want to protect me from discomfort, and views exercise as a threat to my comfort. The non-emotional part of my brain really knows that I CAN walk for exercise, that I feel GOOD emotionally when I do this. But there's something almost instinctive in me that tells me to save my energy at all costs, and go for the comfortable. And here's the chink in this armor my brain is trying to use to protect me: If I DON'T exercise, I feel sad and like a failure for being overweight and unhealthy!
I always say knowledge is power.
What this means to me is that there is a physiological reason I think this way, but now that I recognize it, I CAN find ways to change! It's like my son who has a learning disorder. He probably will never find reading a book easy and fun, but he has obviously found ways to learn and be successful, even becoming a math teacher! He just needed strategies to compensate for how his brain learns.
All this Spark stuff about setting small goals and rewards is exactly what I need to apply to make the changes I really want. Enough blogging for now, but I know I need to get some strategies teed-up regarding me and exercise!!!